IHP news 508: Planetary health

By on February 8, 2019

UN News – Guterres underlines climate action urgency, as UN weather agency confirms record global warming

https://news.un.org/en/story/2019/02/1032121

In the wake of data released by the United Nations World Meteorological Organization (WMO), showing the past four years were officially the ‘four warmest on record,’ UN Secretary-General António Guterres called for urgent climate action and increased ambition, ahead of his climate summit in September.”

For more dire warnings, see also the GuardianMet Office: global warming could exceed 1.5C within five years

Global warming could temporarily hit 1.5C above pre-industrial levels for the first time between now and 2023, according to a long-term forecast by the Met Office. Meteorologists said there was a 10% chance of a year in which the average temperature rise exceeds 1.5C, which is the lowest of the two Paris agreement targets set for the end of the century. Until now, the hottest year on record was 2016, when the planet warmed 1.11C above pre-industrial levels, but the long-term trend is upward. Man-made greenhouse gases in the atmosphere are adding 0.2C of warming each decade but the incline of temperature charts is jagged due to natural variation: hotter El Niño years zig above the average, while cooler La Ninã years zag below. In the five-year forecast released on Wednesday, the Met Office highlights the first possibility of a natural El Niño combining with global warming to exceed the 1.5C mark….”

Guardian – UK worst offender in Europe for electronic waste exports – report

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2019/feb/07/uk-worst-offender-in-europe-for-electronic-waste-exports-report?CMP=share_btn_tw

The UK is the worst offender in Europe for illegally exporting toxic electronic waste to developing countries, according to a two-year investigation that tracked shipments from 10 European countries. The investigation by the environmental watchdog the Basel Action Network (BAN) put GPS trackers on 314 units of computers, LCD monitors and printers placed in recycling facilities in 10 countries. Researchers mapped what they said was the export of 11 items to Ghana, Nigeria, Pakistan, Tanzania, Thailand and Ukraine…”

Ireland, Denmark, Italy, Spain and Germany also exported electronic waste to developing countries in what are suspected to be illegal shipments, the report said. By extrapolating the illegal exports with figures on electronic waste generation throughout Europe, the report estimated that 352,474 metric tonnes of electronic waste was being illegally shipped from the EU to developing countries each year….”

Economist – ExxonMobil’s climate-wrecking bet

https://www.economist.com/leaders/2019/02/09/exxonmobils-climate-wrecking-bet

Even as concerns about global warming grow, energy firms are planning to increase fossil-fuel production. None more than ExxonMobil.”

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